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Lord Lucan is dead: but looking for him was fun and kept me in suncream

Lord-Lucan-How journalism works: looking for fugitive toff Lord Lucan was fun for Garth Gibbs, the Daily Mirror’s man on the tropical beat. Roy Greenslade writes:

Gibbs, who died in 2011, was renowned for his tenacious belief that he was only ever one step behind the missing peer. Not that he minded, however, because he spent a great deal of his employer’s money travelling the world while failing to get his man.

Reflecting on the matter after 30 years of fruitless journalistic endeavour, he explained that he had adopted as his motto an observation made by the canny Sunday Express editor John Junor: “Laddie, you don’t ever want to shoot the fox. Once the fox is dead there is nothing left to chase.”

Gibbs wrote: “With that in mind I regard not finding Lord Lucan as my most spectacular success in journalism. Of course, many of my colleagues have also been fairly successful in not finding Lord Lucan. But I have successfully not found him in more exotic spots than anybody else.”

Indeed, he had. He failed to locate him after three weeks in Cape Town, which was handy because Gibbs, a South African, was able to visit friends and relatives. Nor did he find him in Macau or Hong Kong or the Bahamas.

And that is how journalism works. They didn’t care about Sandra Rivett, the woman Lucan is accused of murdering. The story was all.


Posted: 8th, February 2016 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Lord Lucan is dead: death certificate granted

28th November 1963: John Richard Bingham, Earl of Lucan, and Veronica Duncan after their marriage. (Photo by Douglas Miller/Keystone/Getty Images)

28th November 1963: John Richard Bingham, Earl of Lucan, and Veronica Duncan after their marriage. (Photo by Douglas Miller/Keystone/Getty Images)


8 December 1934 – Richard John Bingham is born in London into an aristocratic Anglo-Irish family

1963 – Marries Veronica Duncan, with whom he has three children

1964 – Ascends to the earldom on the death of his father

1972 – Their marriage collapses and Lucan moves out of the family home at 46 Lower Belgrave St, London. He loses a custody battle and accrues gambling losses

November 7 1974 The children’s nanny Sandra Rivett is found dead. Her attacker also beat Lady Lucan severely before she managed to escape and raise the alarm at a nearby pub. Lucan drives to a friend’s house in Sussex in a borrowed Ford Corsair, which is later found abandoned in Newhaven. Friends receive letters in which he claims to have interrupted a fight during “a traumatic night of unbelievable coincidence” and says “the circumstantial evidence against me is strong”. Police mount a search but find no further trace of him

June 1975 – Lucan is named as Ms Rivett’s killer at the inquest into her death. Lady Lucan identifies him as her attacker

1999 – His family is granted probate over Lord Lucan’s estate, but no death certificate is issued and Lucan’s son Lord Bingham is refused permission to take his father’s seat in the House of Lords

2014 – The Presumption of Death Act enables Lord Bingham to apply to have Lucan declared dead so he can inherit the family title.

2016: Declared dead.

Lots more about the bad Lord here.

Posted: 3rd, February 2016 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Is Lord Lucan really James Hewitt?

DO we want to know what happened to Lord Lucan? It’s a better story that we don’t know how he escaped a murder charge (the nanny Sandra Rivett was killed and mother Veronica injued) by disguising himself as James Hewitt. Guessing makes murder into a tabloid parlour game. Today the Daily Mirror leads with:

My dad Lord Lucan: Son breaks silence

Detectives yesterday sensationally announced they are examining our “new material” in a bid to trace the missing aristocrat.

Richard John Bingham was born in December 1934. He’d be 77 now. He’d be an old man looking at his past, if he still had good mental health. His son is George Bingham.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: 7th, March 2012 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Lord Lucan lived in Africa, says witness

LORD Lucan was declared by the High Court dead in 1999. No body. Just a statement based on odds and probability. What happened to the peer is a mystery to those who did not help him evade British justice.

The latest news is that he went to Africa. A woman who worked for Lucan’s friend John Aspinall has told the BBC that she arranged for his children to fly to Africa where the peer could view them “from a distance”.

That’s toffs for you. Plus ca change.

Posted: 18th, February 2012 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0